Is Retirement, Retiring?

So we are told that 60 is the new 40 which is indeed good news for 59 year old Baby Boomers. Recent press articles have highlighted the good news that we are, on average, living longer – the bad news (from a financial perspective) is also that we are living longer.

As money is just a means to an end, the big question for those contemplating retirement is what is that end? How will you spend your days when you don’t have to go to work? How can you avoid being bored? And will your relationship stand the strain of daily contact with your spouse/partner and not turn into another ‘silver divorce’?

And once you know what you want to do with your life – how much is the accompanying price tag? How long will you live for and therefore what are the chances of running out of money?

Growing trends include semi retiring – working maybe 3 days during the week and having the rest as free time. Or having a retirement gap year – this may be difficult for some to arrange, but for those that are able to, it allows them the opportunity to ‘try before they buy’ and do all the things that they’ve always wanted to do, typical bucket list stuff like Route 66, the Northern Lights, The Great Wall of China or a World cruise.

Longer term retirement strategies can be more challenging once the initial novelty of freedom has worn off and the bucket list has been given a working over. Travel south for the winter, volunteer, play sport, take up a hobby, start a business or perhaps just do some work?

An increasing number of people go full circle and realise that working is so engrained in their life they decide to return to it. Perhaps working a reduced week, keeping the brain active and relieving possible boredom is the right decision for some people.

Perhaps retirement is (not) retiring after all.